Friday, July 15, 2011

Heartbeats and Hoofbeats

Some events are pleasant for us, and others fill us with apprehension. The only people whose lives are a straight line with no ups or downs are those in a coma. When we are excited, our hearts beat faster and our adrenaline kicks into “turbo mode.” When the anticipated event is a happy one, our senses are heightened so that we may enjoy the moment to the fullest. Pending peril, too, generates a similar response. Our sensory tools are sharpened as we wait for the danger to reveal itself to us. After identifying the threat, we determine our response…usually fight or flight.

Most of us who love our nation experience the swelling pride and joy whenever we hear a patriotic song, view a film clip of homecoming soldiers or witness a community pulling together following a natural disaster.  Our sense of connection is more than patriotism. It is a sense of common place…shared experiences and views. Happy heartbeats germinate in a similar environment. When we encounter something that springs from the familiar but contains a positive joy-inducing stimulus, we respond with happiness…unrestrained and glowing. Heart beats induced by happiness may be fast and furious, but they do not consist of the heavy pounding intensity that fear-based ones do.

The thundering hoof beats of Paul Revere’s galloping steed echoed through the night as many in Massachusetts slept. Those who were awake, however probably felt apprehensive heart beats in their chests as Revere spoke the alarm. For them it marked the beginning of new and unknown chapter in their lives. Their zeal for liberty must have been tempered to some degree by the knowledge that they were about to challenge the greatest military power on earth. Second thoughts must have entered their minds as Revere’s hoof beats faded into the dark, and the pounding staccato of their beating hearts may have caused them to fear that the noise might stir their neighbors. The rhythmic sounds of hoof beats and heart beats blended to form a melody of freedom with minor chords of fear.    

The thrill and challenge of facing overwhelming odds when you know that your cause is just can be an exhilaratingly fearful time. The body springs into alert mode and all of the senses are on “super-sensitive.” Muscles twitch with anticipation, and a surge of energy flows through the body. Do you feel that way now? Are your body, your mind and all your senses on “high-alert?” They should be. The hoof beats of alarm have left the area and are moving to call out the next alarm. Your liberty is threatened. Your life, as you know it,…is in danger. Your nation faces its most grave crisis since 1861. You as a champion of liberty and as a defender of the country are being called to action.

This danger is not new to you. I am aware of that, and I know that you have been battling for months or years to stem the flow of a big government run amok. This column is nothing more than an attempt to reinvigorate you because I sense that many of you may be getting weary. Each effort begins with so much hope and anticipation, but the turnout for the meeting is too small, the volunteers at the event are too few, or the hardheads in another group are too obstinate to cooperate. The obstacles sometimes seem too great to overcome. After watching Congress or the President, the legislature or the Governor, the Commissioners or the mayor all do something grievously unconstitutional or monumentally stupid, the task seems too difficult. The sound of the hoof beats reminds you that the alarm is real, and you are needed once again for this just and worthy cause.

Harness your fear for the future, and corral your anger about the audacity of those who foul the Constitution and the rights of our citizens. Bind them, merge them into a burning white-hot heat that will not be denied until your country has been restored…recaptured…returned. Remind yourself again and again that your fight is not for you but for those who follow. Your fervor and energy must not waver. You must persist and persevere because failure is unacceptable and leads to despotism and tyranny. You cannot stop. You must not stop. Your emotion-filled heart reminds you with every forceful beat why you must fight on……………………….and you will.

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